This article aims to explain the labour market penalties among Muslim women in Britain. It draws on theories of intersectionality and colour/cultural racism to argue that the labour market experience of British-Muslim women is multiply determined via criteria of ascription such as ethnicity, migration status, race and religion rather than criteria of achievement. The study uses data from the Labour Force Survey (2002–2013) with a large sample (N=245,391) of women aged 19–65 years. The overarching finding suggests that most Muslim women, regardless of their multiple ascriptive identities, generation and levels of qualifications, still face significant penalties compared with their White-British Christian counterparts. The penalties for some groups, such as Pakistani, Bangladeshi and Black-Muslim women, are harsher than for Indian and White-Muslim women, demonstrating how different social markers and multiple identities have contingent relationships to multiple determinants and outcomes.
Khattab, N and Hussein, S. (2018) Can religious affiliation explain the disadvantage of Muslim women in the British labour market? Work, Employment and Society. 32(6) 1011–1028.
Founder and Director
Shereen Hussein is a Health and Social Care Policy professor at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM), United Kingdom.
Shereen Founded the MENARAH Network in 2019, through an initial grant from the Global Challenge Research Fund, UKRI. She is a medical demographer with expertise in ageing, family dynamics, migration and long-term care systems. Shereen regularly collaborates with the United Nations, the World Health Organisation and the World Bank in policy and research focused on ageing in the Middle East and North Africa Region.
Shereen received her undergraduate degree in statistics and a postgraduate degree in computer science at Cairo University. She completed an MSc in medical demography at the London School of Hygiene and a PhD in quantitative demography and population studies at the London School of Economics and Political Science, United Kingdom.